California Law Firm Provides Legal Counsel to Crypto Users – The Merkle

bitcoinlawCryptocurrency enthusiasts are susceptible to losing funds in many different ways. Aside from human error, there are risks posed by failed ICOs, hacked exchanges, or other calamities. Taylor-Copeland Law is one of the first law firms specializing in these issues. We may be witnessing the creation of a new niche within the legal system as we know it today.

FOCUSING ON EXCHANGES AND ICO MISHAPS

It was only a matter of time until law firms started paying attention to cryptocurrency. Especially with all the issues arising over the past few years, there is a booming market for all companies specializing in cryptocurrency. With so many exchanges getting hacked, disappearing, or failing to provide optimal services, a lot of users are often left frustrated.

Moreover, the initial coin offering industry poses several major risks to consumer funds. No one knows for sure if any given ICO project is legitimate or how things will play out once money has been raised. The Tezos ICO is a good example of how things can go awry pretty quickly if problems aren’t addressed in a timely manner. However, there has often been no legal repercussions for exchanges or ICO teams that fail to deliver on their original promises.

That situation is finally changing, thanks to law firms such as Taylor-Copeland Law. The company has a dedicated page on its website explaining how blockchain technologies and cryptocurrencies will have an impact on our daily lives. However, with the regulatory and legal framework still making it difficult for businesses and individuals to comply with the law, something will need to change.

Furthermore, the company also provides services relating to initial coin offerings. A lot of investors are harmed by projects and teams which misrepresent their projects and intentions before or during their crowd sales. There need to be legal remedies in this regard as well, which is what this firm aims to provide. Additionally, they focus on the taxation of crypto investment gains and help companies check all the right legal boxes before they decide to organize an ICO.

It is expected that we will see even more law firms focus on these specific areas in the near future. There is a growing contingent of cryptocurrency users who will require legal counsel at one point or another. Whether or not all cryptocurrency users will decide to pursue that option is something else entirely. A lot of users may be somewhat ashamed to admit they were victims of an exchange mishap or a malicious ICO project.

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Ten Successful ICOs and Three ICO Scams

The recent proliferation of companies using the ICO or Initial Coin Offering to raise funds has seen it’s share of successes since 2016 and it’s a great way for companies to raise funds without the restrictive and costly regulatory compliance issues associated with other fundraising vehicles such as Regulation Crowd Funding or IPO’s (Initial Public Offering). According to The Merkle online journal the top ten ICO’s in 2017 to date are:

 

10. MONETHA

Although this project was only launched a short while ago, the amount of money raised surprised a lot of people. Monetha aims to provide a globally trusted commerce solution powered by the Ethereum blockchain to merchants in all industries. By raising US$36.6 million during the crowdsale, the ICO showed that people have high expectations for this project moving forward.

9. AETERNITY

Bringing smart contract technology to the masses will not be easy by any stretch of the imagination. Aeternity aims to do exactly that by making smart contracts interface with real-world data.  Whether or not the company will be successful in doing so remains to be seen. However, with US$36.96 million raised during the ICO, there are plenty of reasons to be optimistic about this concept.

8. SONM

The world of supercomputing can benefit from more decentralization. Although SONM is competing against other projects in this industry, it also has a tremendous amount of potential. Its ICO raised US$42 million, which is a modest amount compared to how highly-valued this project can become, given enough time. There is not much hype surrounding SONM, as the team mainly focuses on developing a working ecosystem rather than making empty promises.

7. MOBILEGO

One of the more fascinating projects to date goes by the name of MobileGO. Bringing the world of cryptocurrency and mobile gaming together is quite a major undertaking. However, the project has seen its fair share of successes so far. This also explains how it raised US$53.069 million during its initial crowdsale. It’s definitely a project worth keeping an eye on moving forward.

6. TENX

In the world of cryptocurrency-related debit cards, one can never have enough competition. TenX is one of the ICO projects launching in 2017 which aims to make a big impact in this regard. By raising US$64 million during the ICO, there has been a lot of initial interest in this project. However, that amount of money is no guarantee for success whatsoever.

5. STATUS

Many people will recall the Status ICO for the wrong reasons. It’s not because the project is bad, as some real progress has been made. Unfortunately, the Status ICO highlighted major scalability issues for the Ethereum network, which got stuck due to the number of people trying to invest. When everything was said and done, Status raised US$90 million rather quickly.

4. BANCOR

The Bancor ICO has received a lot of initial interest due to the involvement of Tim Draper. This project is also one of those ICOs which sold out very quickly, for obvious reasons. Raising US$153 million is not shabby. It will be interesting to see what the team will do with this money, as the expectations of them are incredibly high.

3. EOS (STAGE 1)

The EOS project has turned a lot of heads even though no one knows for sure if the team can deliver on its promises. There is a lot of interest in the concept, though, which has already translated into successfully raising US$185 million during its ICO. Putting that money to good use will be the number one priority right now.

2. TEZOS

Creating a decentralized blockchain capable of governing itself through a digital commonwealth sounds pretty interesting on paper. Bringing this technology to the masses will be something else entirely, though. Tezos successfully raised US$232.319 million to bring this blockchain to fruition. Whether or not the product will succeed in the end still remains to be determined.

1. FILECOIN

A lot of people were legitimately surprised by the Filecoin ICO, for obvious reasons. This project raised US$257 million out of the blue, even though the concept appears to be solid. A decentralized file storage network will certainly have major implications. Users will also earn Filecoin for hosting files, which is something a lot of enthusiasts will look forward to

These are some of the success stories to date, however, there have been many ICO’s that took advantage of the unregulated investment vehicle and The Securities & Exchange Commission (SEC) issued several stern warnings to investors about the dangers and risks involved with ICOs although they have yet to issue any regulations I am confident that they are forthcoming. China and South Korea both issued total bans on  ICO’s until they can come up with some regulations while the United States has issued several warnings and has stated that they may pursue enforcement actions retroactively against any ICO’s that are done prior to whatever regulations they may come out with in the future. The Merkel recently published the following three ICOs as being obvious scams:

3) OPAIR

The Opair ICO was one of the earliest noted scams in ICO history happening back in 2016. They raised more than $1M with the promise of decentralized debit cards.

It should have been pretty obvious from the start, that a no-name group of individuals could not overhaul the banking system and provide decentralized debit cards that would work anywhere right off the bat, but with more and more exciting new Blockchain technology hitting the markets, people were hopeful.

Things started to unravel when users pointed out that the Opair team seemed to have fake LinkedIn profiles, and despite providing tons of personal information and pictures, refused to attend events or go on video calls for “privacy reasons.”

Not long after the Opair token was listed on exchanges, lots of coins were rapidly dumped, the main website was taken offline and the team went silent.

Sleuths on Bitcointalk.org later realized that the conman behind the Opair later launched at least one other scam ICO known as EBITZ (a Zcash clone) as the scammer use some of the same server DNS records for the new website.

2) BITCAD

There is still a bit of debate about BitCad, if it was a downright scam or if it was just a failed attempt at something larger. But, none the less a lot of people lost a lot of money.

BitCad raised $5M promising to be, well, everything. The BitCad ICO project aimed at replacing nearly every component of modern business, government, trading and transaction facilitation and gave very few insights into how they were going to make this happen.

While at first, they boasted a pretty large team, after the ICO team members started to depart the team quite rapidly, and announcements from the team ground to a halt.

The team was supposed to deliver the first component of the platform back in May 2017, that included a smart contract constructor and biometric verification, by October 2017 they were also supposed to launch a dispute resolution department, a multistakeholder token model, and a decentralized trade engine. None of which have been launched yet.

People are still holding their breath hoping for signs of life in the BitCad platform, but this is another ICO where they were either being sold snake oil or a team took on a project that was way over their heads.

1) AUTHORSHIP

Authorship was an ERC20 token that raised $1M with the promise of creating a system for writers, translators, and journalists to earn and exchange ATS tokens for their works.

Participants should have been skeptical when the tokens creators mentioned the desire to build out this token from their experience running the bookstore: http://www.ireadbooks.org/ – it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to realize that the terrible e-commerce website that only sells pencils and blank notebooks isn’t much of a “bookstore.”

They also listed their address as “11015 York Road Cockeysville Maryland” which is the home of an entirely unrelated ‘Precision Auto Mechanics” business which seems to have no relation to the coin creators.

What really did in Authorship though was their failure to distribute tokens from the bounty and referral programs. It wasn’t until then that users realized they had been scammed and started digging into the addresses above.

Arguably had Authorship distributed the tokens, we may have categorized this just as a failed attempt at an ICO rather than a downright scam.

Bitcoin Has Caught the Attention of Tanzania’s Central Bank – Bitcoin News

At first, I was like…yeah so? Why is this important? Then I read of this man’s careful but considered approach to dealing with the yet unknown world of cybercurrencies and ico trading gone wild and his calm determination to cover all the bases then issue a statement that is his responsibility to do on this subject for the administration to which he reports.

tanzania

 

 

Bitcoin is growing popular throughout a few regions within the giant continent of Africa. One of these areas seeing bitcoin growth is the United Republic of Tanzania. Due to the rise in interest towards bitcoin from Tanzanian citizens the Bank of Tanzania governor, Benno Ndulu, expressed some concerns about the decentralized currency this week. Also Read: Bitmari Becomes First Bitcoin Company to Partner With an African Commercial Bank Bank of Tanzania Governor Benno Ndulu Has Noticed Bitcoin’s Rise in Tanzania Currently, online searches for the decentralized cryptocurrency bitcoin are trending significantly within the Eastern and Southern African regions. There is significant interest in areas like Nigeria, Kenya, and Tanzania and these regions have a plethora of ways to obtain bitcoin. In Tanzania specifically, Localbitcoins volumes have risen exponentially since last Spring and the country’s central bank is beginning to take notice. Bank of Tanzania (BoT) governor, Benno Ndulu. This week the governor of the Bank of Tanzania (BoT) Benno Ndulu told the country’s local newspaper, the Guardian, that Tanzanians should be aware of the risks associated with digital currencies.

Source: Bitcoin Has Caught the Attention of Tanzania’s Central Bank – Bitcoin News

What is an ICO?

Prime-Ex-About-PEX-Initial-Coin-Offering-ICOICO stands for Initial Coin Offering and it’s a fundraising vehicle that has become very popular over the past few years and is similar to an IPO. Here’s a very good definition on Investopia:

An unregulated means by which funds are raised for a new cryptocurrency venture. An Initial Coin Offering (ICO) is used by startups to bypass the rigorous and regulated capital-raising process required by venture capitalists or banks. In an ICO campaign, a percentage of the cryptocurrency is sold to early backers of the project in exchange for legal tender or other cryptocurrencies, but usually for Bitcoin.

Also called an Initial Public Coin Offering (IPCO).

BREAKING DOWN ‘Initial Coin Offering (ICO)’

When a cryptocurrency startup firm wants to raise money through an Initial Coin Offering (ICO), it usually creates a plan on a whitepaper which states what the project is about, what need(s) the project will fulfill upon completion, how much money is needed to undertake the venture, how much of the virtual tokens the pioneers of the project will keep for themselves, what type of money is accepted, and how long the ICO campaign will run for. During the ICO campaign, enthusiasts and supporters of the firm’s initiative buy some of the distributed cryptocoins with fiat or virtual currency. These coins are referred to as tokens and are similar to shares of a company sold to investors in an Initial Public Offering (IPO) transaction. If the money raised does not meet the minimum funds required by the firm, the money is returned to the backers and the ICO is deemed to be unsuccessful. If the funds requirements are met within the specified timeframe, the money raised is used to either initiate the new scheme or to complete it.

Early investors in the operation are usually motivated to buy the cryptocoins in the hope that the plan becomes successful after it launches which could translate to a higher cryptocoin value than what they purchased it for before the project was initiated. An example of a successful ICO project that was profitable to early investors is the smart contracts platform called Ethereum which has Ethers as its coin tokens. In 2014, the Ethereum project was announced and its ICO raised $18 million in Bitcoins or $0.40 per Ether. The project went live in 2015 and in 2016 had an ether value that went up as high as $14 with a market capitalization of over $1 billion.

ICOs are similar to IPOs and crowdfunding. Like IPOs, a stake of the startup or company is sold to raise money for the entity’s operations during an ICO operation. However, while IPOs deal with investors, ICOs deal with supporters that are keen to invest in a new project much like a crowdfunding event. But ICOs differ from crowdfunding in that the backers of the former are motivated by a prospective return in their investments, while the funds raised in the latter campaign are basically donations. For these reasons, ICOs are referred to as crowdsales.

Although there are successful ICO transactions on record and ICOs are poised to be disruptive innovative tools in the digital era, investors are cautioned to be wary as some ICO or crowdsale campaigns are actually fraudulent. Because these fund-raising operatives are not regulated by financial authorities such as the Securities Exchange Commission (SEC), funds that are lost due to fraudulent initiatives may never be recovered.

In early September, 2017, the People’s Bank of China officially banned ICOs, citing it as disruptive to economic and financial stability. The central bank said tokens cannot be used as currency on the market and banks cannot offer services relating to ICOs. As a result, both bitcoin and ethereum tumbled, and it was viewed as a sign that regulations of cryptocurrencies are coming. The ban also penalizes offerings already completed.

Read more: Initial Coin Offering (ICO) Definition | Investopedia http://www.investopedia.com/terms/i/initial-coin-offering-ico.asp#ixzz4ukp8acvA
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What is a Smart Contract?

smart-contracts-5-638I’ve been asked many times recently what exactly is a “smart contract” and it’s a bit difficult to explain to most people. They are in the two-dimensional “paper contract” mindset when I’m trying to explain a three dimentional decentralized blockchain asset. Here is the Wikipedia version:

smart contract is a computer protocol intended to facilitate, verify, or enforce the negotiation or performance of a contract. Smart contracts were first proposed by Nick Szabo in 1996.[1]

Proponents of smart contracts claim that many kinds of contractual clauses may be made partially or fully self-executing, self-enforcing, or both. The aim with smart contracts is to provide security that is superior to traditional contract law and to reduce other transaction costs associated with contracting.

Smart contracts have been used primarily in association with cryptocurrencies. The most prominent smart contract implementation is the Ethereumblockchain platform,[2] where they are known as a decentralized application (dapp, stylized ĐApp).

The real-world smart contract that gained mainstream coverage was The DAO, a decentralized autonomous organization for venture capital funding, running on Ethereum, which was launched with US$250 million in crowdfunding in May 2016 and was hacked and drained of 3,689,577 ETH three weeks later.[3]

History[edit]

The phrase “smart contracts” was coined by Nick Szabo in 1996, and reworked over several years. Szabo’s first publication, “Smart Contracts: Building Blocks for Digital Free Markets” was published in Extropy #16,[4] and then later reworked as “Formalizing and Securing Relationships on Public Networks.”[5]These documents described how it would be possible to establish contract law and related business practices through the design of electronic commerceprotocols, between strangers on the Internet. Szabo describes smart contracts as:

New institutions, and new ways to formalize the relationships that make up these institutions, are now made possible by the digital revolution. I call these new contracts “smart”, because they are far more functional than their inanimate paper-based ancestors. No use of artificial intelligence is implied. A smart contract is a set of promises, specified in digital form, including protocols within which the parties perform on these promises.[6]

Szabo, inspired by researchers like David Chaum, also had a broader expectation that specification through clear logic, and verification or enforcement through cryptographic protocols and other digital security mechanisms, might constitute a sharp improvement over traditional contract law, even for some traditional kinds of contractual clauses (such as automobile security interests that provide for repossession) that could be brought under the dominion of computer protocols.[7]

With the present implementations, based on blockchains,[8] “smart contract” is mostly used more specifically in the sense of general purpose computation that takes place on a blockchain or distributed ledger. In this interpretation, used for example by the Ethereum Foundation[9] or IBM[10], a smart contract is not necessarily related to the classical concept of a contract, but can be any kind of computer program.

Implementations[edit]

Systems such as Ethereum emerged after the first successful blockchain deployment. These were designed to achieve greater Turing completeness and create vast value chain ecologies.[clarification needed][11]

Notable examples of implementation of smart contract technology are:

  • Ethereum implements a Turing complete language on their blockchain. It is the most-used smart contract platform.[2]
  • Namecoin is a replicated domain name registry.[12]
  • Ripple (Codius), development halted in 2015[13]
  • Automated Transactions[14] is another turing complete smart contract language, used in cryptocurrencies like Burstcoin and Qora. An example for its usage is atomic cross-chain trading.[15]

Security issues[edit]

A smart contract is “a computerized transaction protocol that executes the terms of a contract.”[16] A blockchain-based smart contract is visible to all users of said blockchain. However, this leads to a situation where bugs, including security holes, are visible to all but may not be able to be quickly fixed.[17]

Such an attack, difficult to fix quickly, was successfully executed on The DAO in June 2016, draining US$50 million in Ether while developers attempted to come to a solution that would gain consensus.[18] The DAO program had a time delay in place before the hacker could remove the funds; a hard fork of the Ethereum software was done to claw back the funds from the attacker before the time limit expired.[19]

Issues in Ethereum smart contracts in particular include ambiguities and easy-but-insecure constructs in its contract language Solidity, compiler bugs, Ethereum Virtual Machine bugs, attacks on the blockchain network, the immutability of bugs and that there is no central source documenting known vulnerabilities, attacks and problematic constructs.[2]

Replicated titles and contract execution[edit]

Szabo proposes that smart contract infrastructure can be implemented by replicated asset registries[20] and contract execution using cryptographic hash chains and Byzantine fault tolerant replication. Askemos implemented this approach in 2002[21][22] using Scheme (later adding SQLite[23][24]) as contract script language.[25]

One proposal for using bitcoin for replicated asset registration and contract execution is called “colored coins”.[26] Replicated titles for potentially arbitrary forms of property, along with replicated contract execution, are implemented in different projects.

Hypothesised advantages of a smart contract over its equivalent conventional financial instrument include minimizing counterparty risk, reducing settlement times, and increased transparency.[27] As of 2015, UBS was experimenting with “smart bonds” that use the bitcoin blockchain[28] in which payment streams could hypothetically be fully automated, creating a self-paying instrument.[29]

In popular culture[edit]

Karl Schroeder‘s 2002 novel Permanence features a “rights economy” in which all physical objects are nano-tagged with contractual requirements, so that payment may be enforced for all uses of proprietary information, e.g., a military mission in deep space must continuously justify the cost-benefit ratio of each ship or it will stop working.

See also[edit]

NEO Price Rises to Almost $34 as New All-time High is Within Reach – The Merkle

It appeared the NEO price was well underway to set a new all-time high a few days ago, but things eventually retraced to a much lower level. Given the slightly negative and sideways pressure on the Bitcoin market, that isn’t entirely surprising whatsoever. As of right now, the NEO price has climbed back to around $33.88 all of a sudden, although setting that new all-time high will not be all that easy.

NEO PRICE MOUNTS ANOTHER COMEBACK

This past week has been pretty interesting for all cryptocurrencies. Especially the individuals looking to scalp profits by daytrading have had multiple options to make some good money in quick succession. More specifically, especially where the NEO price is concerned, things have moved in some very odd directions overall. At first, the price was well below the $30 mark, which made buying it an almost no-brainer for experienced cryptocurrency enthusiasts.

Not too long after, we saw a solid NEO price uptrend, elevating the price to just over $37.50 by October 2nd and 3rd. People who sold at that moment have made some solid profit, and they were met with another buying opportunity shortly after. More specifically, the NEO price took a dip all the way down to $32.5 and later on even below $30 again. It is highly likely this momentum was tied to the Bitcoin price chart, which saw its own ups and downs along the way as well.

Which brings us to today, a time at which we see the NEO price hitting $33.88. A more than solid value, considering there have been two dips to below the $30 mark in one week. At the same time, this price correction would happen eventually, as the rise to $37.5 was pretty steep in general. Such a price increase cannot occur without going through a correction shortly afterward, that much is certain.

Whether or not we will see a NEO price all-time high again in the coming weeks, remains to be seen, though. No one can deny there have been some interesting valuation changes over the past week, although there is always room for future growth in this regard.  To achieve the next level, NEO would need some additional trading volume by the look of things, as things are a bit bleak in that regard.

That being said, the $60.62m in 24-hour NEO trading volume shouldn’t be overlooked by any means. This number is more than solid, as it ensures the NEO market cap remains well above the $1.6bn level. This amount may be surprising to a lot of people, considering NEO was a currency very few people paid attention to about two months ago. Things have certainly come a very long way ever since that time.

With Bitfinex finally becoming the largest NEO exchange ranked by volume, the addition of this emerging altcoin is doing the company some good. Although Bitfinex also leads the market in Bitcoin trading volume, it is always good to appeal to altcoin users as well. Binance and Bittrex complete the top three for NEO right now, although both of those exchanges represent a BTC/NEO market rather than one linked to fiat currency. An interesting “power ranking” to keep an eye on, that much is certain.

US cyber-security marketplace launches pre-IPO | Finfeed.com

With the growing security needs coinciding with the Internet of Things (IoT) and Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) trends, as well as increased deployment of web and cloud-based business applications, cyber-security is one of the largest and fastest growing markets in the tech space. The global cyber-security market is currently worth US$147 billion. The US portion of that market alone is US$75 billion, and is expected to grow to US$220 billion by 2020. Global cyber-security spending, moreover, is predicted to exceed US$1 trillion cumulatively over the next five years. Given that in Australia, the number of detected security incidents rose by over 100 per cent in the past year, none of this comes as a huge surprise. On top of this, US$6 trillion worth of cyber-crime damages is predicted to occur annually by the year 2021. These kinds of statistics make the mission of US-based tech company, WhiteHawk, crystal clear. WhiteHawk is a cyber security disruptor co-founded by the former deputy head of US naval intelligence, Terry Roberts. Its goal: to “empower a fearless internet”. WhiteHawk is scheduled to IPO in early December 2017 at 20 cents. The company is currently doing a very small pre-IPO round of $320,000 at 16 cents before listing. Open to sophisticated investors, this offer is currently live on Raisebook.com. (Raisebook is a related entity of Finfeed.com’s parent company S3 Consortium Pty Ltd as defined in Section 9 of the Corporations Act 2001). It’s important to bear in mind that investing in an IPO is highly speculative, so those considering an investment should seek independent professional financial advice. WhiteHawk has created an online marketplace of cyber-security service providers and a patented algorithm that matches companies to their most suited providers. WhiteHawk’s B2B digital cyber-security exchange is the first of its kind, with strong potential for market domination. And with 82 percent of Australian corporate CEOs rating cyber-security as one of their top three risks, there’s a clearly receptive market for this kind of risk-identifying, transparent marketplace.

Source: US cyber-security marketplace launches pre-IPO | Finfeed.com

5 Ways to Protect Your Small Business from a Cyberattack

If you’re like most small business owners, cybersecurity isn’t a top priority. You probably don’t think you’re at risk for a cyberattack because it seems like a “big business” problem, affecting major retailers like Target and, more recently, the credit reporting agency Equifax. After all, who would bother stealing your insignificant data when they could hack into Target instead? This kind of thinking has made small business the victim of nearly half of all cyberattacks. Hackers are going after small businesses because small businesses have valuable data and weak cybersecurity protections, making them the perfect targets. By penetrating a small business, hackers can do significant damage: They can retrieve stored information like customer credit card numbers. They may use information to gain access to the computer systems of much larger partner businesses. The 2014 Target data breach happened because hackers stole login credentials from a heating, ventilation, and air conditioning company that serviced some of Target’s stores. Hackers have found there’s easy money in ransomware. They lock up critical files and then demand hundreds of dollars in “ransom” to restore your access. A cyberattack can force you to temporarily shut down your business, as you work to access data and get websites and systems working again. Customers may lose trust in you, damaging your reputation and profits over the long term. A cyberattack can cost a small business as much as $250,000. There are, however, things you can do to protect your small business from a cyberattack and minimize the damage if one does occur. Here are five of them.

Continue: 5 Ways to Protect Your Small Business from a Cyberattack

South Korean Crypto Community to Push Back Against ICO Ban – Bitcoin News

Last week, South Korean regulators said they would ban all initial coin offerings. They are imposing a “prohibition on all forms of ICOs.” However, they have not implemented this ban yet. Now, startups in the area are pushing back against the impending ban.  Also read: An Inside Look at Genesis Block — Hong Kong’s New Cryptocurrency Working-Space Leaders in the regional blockchain industry have said an ICO ban has no legal grounding. A Forbes article clarified, “Local crypto industry leaders argue that the ban is legally groundless. They fear overregulation will push local talent and currency to more welcoming jurisdictions like Switzerland, Singapore and Japan.” News.Bitcoin.com covered the issue when South Korea made the decision. Author Kevin Helms talked about why they issued the possible banning. He said, “The news outlet elaborated that ‘the decision to ban ICOs as a fundraising tool was made as the government sees such issues as increasing the risk of financial scams.’” The Crypto Community is Surprised by the Announcement of a Ban Members of the Korean community were still surprised by the governments’ hasty decision to ban ICOs. They knew a negative announcement on ICOs were coming, but they did not foresee the implementation of a total ban. The CEO of Bitcoin Center Korea,  John Ra, provided some commentary on the announcement: We were expecting this kind of announcement, but we were surprised they used the words ‘total ban.’ He mentioned that the timing was interesting on the part of regulatory bodies. They brought up the desire to ban ICOs prior to Chuseok, or the Thanksgiving holiday. This caught many crypto companies by surprise, as they did not have ample time to respond. Startups to Take a Stand Against Government The Forbes article mentioned Kim Tae-won, the former chairman of the Korea Blockchain Industry Promotion Association and CTO of startup Glosfer, is gathering the crypto community to fight back. He is preparing a petition that would prevent the government from banning ICOs. The petition calls for regulatory entities to provide a deeper assessment and gather more information before making a decision to ban ICOs. “Glosfer hired a law firm that has determined that ICOs cannot be penalized under existing laws. The blockchain association will then ‘face it head on’ with the National Assembly by the end of October, Kim says.” The Rushed ICO Ban and its Effects on Bitcoin According to Forbes sources, Kim said the decision to ban ICOs was “rushed.” Kim also theorized that this hasty decision was caused by pressure from influential regulators and government agents. The fact that vaporous and scammy ICOs exist, probably expedited their decision to call for a ban. Regardless of outcome, every time these countries rush to ban ICOs, Bitcoin suffers temporarily. The cryptocurrency market ecosystem functions in unison. Still, bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies have always manage to recover even when governments try to attack them. It will be interesting to see if the South Korean Bitcoin and cryptocurrency community can come together to stop government regulators from interceding in the market. They seem to believe the ICO ban can be reversed.

Source: South Korean Crypto Community to Push Back Against ICO Ban – Bitcoin News

Norton’s Core wants to be the ultimate watchdog for your home tech

Symantec Corp.You know Symantec’s (SYMC) Norton for its line of PC security software that continuously tells you it needs to be updated. But now the company is moving into the hardware space with a special kind of router that promises to secure all of your disparate connected devices. The Norton Core, available now for the not insignificant price of $279, is designed to ensure everything from your PC and Mac to your smartphone and connected door bell are protected against attacks from hackers or malware. Its built-in device management features and parental controls can also help prevent your kids from accessing inappropriate websites. But its high cost is a big ask, especially coupled with the fact that you’ll need to pay $10 per month to get the best security features after your first free year runs out. View photos The Norton Core is designed to be attractive so you’ll keep it out in the open where it can provide the best signal. More It starts with an app The big trend in Wi-Fi routers, if there is such a thing, is simplifying the setup process for consumers by retiring those old-school web page interfaces in favor of easy-to-follow app-based instructions. To get started, you download the Norton Core app to your smartphone, plug in your Core to your wall outlet and your modem and sign up for Norton account. Once you have your account set up, the Core will take ask you to do things like choose a network name and password and add a guest network for when friends come over.

Source: Norton’s Core wants to be the ultimate watchdog for your home tech